Read about Day One of our Old Ghost Road adventure here.
After a big sleep we woke up naturally and then had a lie in as we had no rush to get up. Eventually we joined everyone in the main hut and enjoyed a hot breakfast with conversation before getting on the trail before 8:30am.
The trail continued from yesterday meandering downstream before climbing up past some unnamed lakes. There was some fog that made the scenery totally stunning. But we couldn’t stay there enjoying the view for too long and continued our climb. This was the only significant climb of the day but it lead to a nice flowing descent down to the historic Goat Creek Hut.
This was an interesting wee hut with some interesting history. The trail continued down river and got to a decent bridge. This bridge has an interesting ecological feature and that is a secure door in the middle of it to stop possums moving from one side of the river to the other. The Powelliphanta snail is a native carnivorous snail. The possums on one side of the river have learned to eat them, but on the other side they have not. So by keeping the two possum populations separate DOC want to avoid one group teaching the other to eat snails.
It was not long after this point, that I broke my chain again. As I had used my joiner link the previous day I had to use a chain tool to remove a couple of links and then rejoin the chain which always weakens the chain, but was the only option for me out here.
We continued on to Mokihinui Forks Hut and met some kayakers who had been heli dropped upstream and paddled down to here to overnight in the hut. We had also joined a couple (on and off) who were riding the track over a number of days.
We made our way down stream after the confluence of the Mokihinui rivers (south and north branch). It looked like an amazing paddling adventure ahead for the guys we met at the hut. Unfortunately, not too far along here I ended up snapping my chain again. My chain got two links shorter and Rachel and I took things very gently after this, even walking some uphills to make sure that there isn’t too much torque on my chain which could snap it again.
There is only a short distance between the Mokihinui Forks Hut and Specimen Point Hut, but WOW what a view. The deck in this hut opens out and gives a great view of the river below.
As we made our way west, we gently climbed and come along to some amazing bluffs. On these sections it is recommended to get off and walk. We caught up to the couple from earlier again who had overtaken us whilst I fixed my chain. They had a spare joining link and offered it for us in the middle of one of these dismounted sections. After talking and putting the link in my pocket, we didn’t think and jumped back on our bikes, whoops. We didn’t realise our error until we got to the gate at the other end of this section.
Along this section are the remains of an old bridge that was on the old road to Karamea.
This bridge was knocked down by the 1929 Murchison earthquake.
Although not technical in nature the trail got to a point were we were advised by a sign that it was a steep uphill for the next 400m. Where was the sign in Lyell that advised us of the steep uphill for the next 20km?
What goes up must come down. And we got a good wee downhill to the road end. Then we were on a four wheel drive track for a little bit and then a nice wee bit of single track that took us through to the Rough and Tumble Lodge. This is a nice wee place that serves local craft beers and great homemade pizzas. After a quick dip in the river and putting on clean clothes we ordered pizza and a coke to lift the blood sugar levels as we waited for the rest of the crew to arrive. The coke barely touched the side, and a nice West Coast beer helped the pizza go down.
Read my Day One post here: